After reading this blog post, you will have a much better understanding of how to create an offer they can’t refuse.

An offer is asking someone to do something or to take a specific action. If you are targeting the right audience and have a great offer, they will take the action you want them to take.

I see a lot of offers from businesses and professional service providers, but I rarely see a good one.

At some point, I’m sure you have received one of the large postcards dentists send to everyone. Unfortunately, 99% of the mailings I receive from dentists are useless. They are simply throwing money away and convincing themselves they are marketing because they are sending a postcard that could generate business with not much thought given to the content of the card and who they are mailing to.

Most of the postcards have the same information as the one I received a few days before from another dentist. They generally have a picture of themselves along with their staff. The copy consists of – Visit our Facebook Page, we will give you a bright smile, we love our patients, free first visit/evaluation, etc. with a phone number and address. There is no clear call to action, no reason to take action, and really nothing on the card that would make me want to call them versus their competitor. Unless the person receiving the postcard needs a dentist when they receive the card, it will probably go into the trash.

So for those reasons, I say they are wasting money. For most, just adding a clear call to action using the three steps mentioned previously would be a huge step forward. There is so much space on the card to create some great copy and a compelling offer. But I rarely see it.

Two types of offers

The first offer type is where you give them information on your product or service and ask them to buy. This is a direct purchase offer. These type offers can work if you have a very niche, highly targeted audience that is ready to buy now. Otherwise it rarely works. Shopping cart software, such as SamCart, could potentially be a good tool to use for this type offer.

The second offer type is a lead generation offer. This is better suited to building a relationship with a prospect prior to asking or the sale. This is accomplished by having a signup form on your website where you ask for their email address in exchange for something of value, such as a free report, checklist, video, or something else that would be of value to them. Once they enter their email address, they are automatically placed into your sales funnel.

Your sales funnel will allow you to send them weekly emails with even more value, then after four or five emails, you will ask for the sale. The other advantage of the lead generation offer is it allows you to build a relationship with them over a period of time. They learn to trust what you are saying and will be easier to sell when you make an offer to purchase your product or service.

You could also have a combination of the two. You will see this on TV advertisements. You can look at SunSetter Awnings for an example of using multiple offers. On their website, they have the free info kit, a $200 off promotion and a phone number to call. You can also purchase an awning directly on their website. They also periodically run TV ads.

Fisher Investments is another company that uses lead generation offers with TV advertising and direct mail campaigns. If you go to their website, you can also download their “7 Ways To Generate Income In Retirement” guide in exchange for your information. They have multiple offer to sell their services.

The dentist mentioned at the beginning of this blog post would do a lot better if they have a great offer on the card. Their offer could be go to mydentistwebsite.com and download our free guide – “10 Things You Should Know About Your Child’s Dental Health”. Now the person receiving the postcard goes to mydentistwebsite.com to download the dentist’s free guide. Then the dentist can continue to follow up with them through weekly emails delivering more valuable information. Now the dentist has top of mind presence and will be more likely to make the sale.

How do you create a great offer?

The first thing you need to do to create a great offer is get clear on who you are targeting. If you are targeting people who don’t qualify for your offer, can’t afford it, or have no interest, then your offer will not produce good results.

For example, if you are a pediatric dentist and you are sending offers to people who don’t have children, then you may not have much success with your offer. If you are sending an offer for a European vacation to people who have no disposable income, you may not have anyone accepting your offer.

Check out my other blog posts “Choosing Your Target Market” and  “Create Your Customer Avatar” for more information on getting more clear on who you are targeting.

Consider your audience’s preconceived notions about you and your business?

There are a few more things you must consider when creating your offer. More than likely, your audience has a preconceived notion in their mind about you or what you do. They have certain beliefs about what you have to offer. For example, they think they are already marketing successfully because they have a marketing person in their office who “handles all their marketing.” But they can’t tell me exactly what their marketing person is doing. The say things like, “They post a lot to social media.” When asked how that is working for them, they tell me people seem to like the posts. But they can’t tell me in real dollars what the results this marketing person is delivering.

How will you overcome these preconceived notions to create different beliefs about your product or service?

In the previous example, you would need to help them see how what they are doing is a good start for their marketing, but also show them what they are missing and how you can deliver what they need. Show them how you can produce measurable results for their marketing. You can show them what’s working and what’s not working in their marketing rather than guessing or just assuming their marketing is producing results.

Three components of a great offer

There are three main components that make up a great offer. If you get all three right, you will have an offer they can’t refuse (if the offer gets in front of the right audience).

1. The first part of your offer is to be very specific on what you want them to do. So the first part of your offer could be call us at 555-555-5555 or go to mydentistwebsite.com to get my free guide.

2. The second part of your offer will set a deadline for responding to the offer to create a sense of urgency. . Otherwise, they will forget about you and never respond. Generally, the shorter the response time, the more effective the offer. For direct mail campaigns this could be a specific date the offer expires. For a webinar you could have a countdown timer on the signup page to let them know time is running out to sign up for your webinar. You have probably seen an offer where you get a Bonus if you signup for a webinar or purchase a product before a specific date. Those are just a few examples for how to create a sense of urgency.

3. The third part is to let them know what’s in it for them if they accept your offer. There must be a good reason for them to take action on the offer. What will be different in their lives or what will they get if they respond to your offer by the specified date? What is the transformation that takes place once they purchase your product or service?

Here is a couple of good examples

Example 1: Go to our website at mydentistwebsite.com and download our free guide “10 Things You Need To Improve Your Child’s Oral Health. Discover how to make your child’s next visit more enjoyable and how you can save money.”

Example 2: Call BR549 to schedule your appointment by Thursday, November 10th to receive a 15% discount on our services.

The first example does not have the strong sense of urgency, but it does tell them specifically what to do and what’s in it for them. Just having those two components of a great offer is better than most of the offers you are exposed to on a daily basis.

The second example is simplistic, but it has all three components of a great offer.

How will you measure the success of your offer?

Everything in your marketing must be measured. Your offer is no exception. If you send 1000 direct mail pieces, you will need to track how many phone calls, how many downloads, how many website visits, and anything else you think of that could be measured. This requires a little extra effort on your part to ask anyone who calls how they found out about you.

If you have a lead generation offer where visitors to your website enter their information to get something of value, your professional email service provider will provide statistics for opens, clicks, and more.

To track all of the above, you could have a specific code they place in an email and send to you. You could include a code in your direct mail piece and have them mention the code when they call. Now you will know which calls came from your direct mail campaign and which ones came from your website.

Try different offers in different media – signup form on your website, Facebook Ads, TV ads, radio ads, etc. Have them request your free guide, checklist, or something else of value you can offer your audience either with a phone call or through the signup form on your website. And finally, always have a way to track your results.

All the best,

Mike Coleman